Category Archives for "Google Webmaster Tools"

Google Search Console Complete Guide For Beginners (Updated)

In this article you will come to know everything about Google Webmaster Tools (GWT) or what is now referred to as the Google Search Console. The reason you really want to make sure that you are using this free account is because when Google crawls your website they give you a report telling you what they like and they just like about your site. This way you can use this information to improve your site performance and help it to rank higher and search results. So here we'll take a close look at the different sections of Google Search Console so you know what each section is for how you can benefit from it and how to use Google Webmaster Tools (GWT).

How to add a site in Google Search Console

First things first you're going to need to set up your account. It's pretty quick and painless to do you'll start by signing in to your Google account you probably already have. Once you are in Google webmaster tools you will have to insert your URL here and click on Add A Property. Click here to add your website now.

add a site in google search console

Now once you've added your property, Google wants to know that you are actually the owner of this website. So they're going to give you a few ways to actually verify the ownership. The first option that they're going to give you the recommended option is to upload an HTML file. So all you would need to do is click on the file to download and then you can log in via FTP or you can log into the file manager that you can access through your cPanel through your hosting account. Upload this HTML file, you can then verify that you own the site by clicking on the link that they provide you there in step number three and then you'll click on verify.

google search console

If you don't feel comfortable uploading the HTML file they do give you a few alternate methods that you can use as well. So you'll be able to add a Meta tag to your site, you can log into your domain name provider and the easy one if you already have Google analytics setup is to connect your accounts and they'll be able to see the tracking code is already there as well or using Google tag manager so whichever option you use it doesn't really matter. So pick the one that feels most comfortable to you that you can do in the fastest amount of time. But once this step is done your account is ready and you can begin. So let's go ahead and start walking for your Google webmaster tools account.

webmaster verification

We're going to start with the search console preferences. Here this is where you are going to either enable or disable email notifications. You absolutely want to make sure that you have your email. No applications set up because that way when Google cross your site if they notice any errors they're going to email you about it. That way you don't have to login just to see if they have set you any messages so absolutely make sure that you've set that.

search console preferences

Canonical Issue Fixing | WWW or non WWW

The next option is site settings. Now this is a very important one this is where we want to set our preferred domain and the default option is going to be don't set a preferred domain. But this is where you want to tell Google whether you want your www or non www version of your website to be your main website. So select the one that is what you would like to be your preferred domain and click Save.

www or non www

When you do that you're going to receive a message that says part of the process of setting up a preferred domain is to verify that you also own the other non www version. The reason for this is because Google actually sees your two versions of your website as two different websites.

So you're going to go through the same process that we walk through earlier and then you can select whether you want Google to limit how often they crawl your site or if you just want to let them determine that.

Next one we have a change of address. This is nothing that you will need to do in the beginning, but in the event where you decide to change your domain name this is going to give you a checklist of what you would need to do to really notify Google, that you are changing your domains. It's going to be the checklist of the different steps that you can take and you'll be able to submit the change of address request directly to Google here.

The next one is the Google analytics property. Now this is where you are going to be able to select from a list of any of the analytics web properties that you already have set up in your account. If you have several you'll see them here if you only have the one that you've set up for this particular site that will be listed here. You should go ahead and select the one that's listed here and click on save. It's going to ask you to confirm. Click OK and that's it. Now you have linked your Google search console account with your Google Analytics account.

How to add a New User to Google Webmaster Tools

Next we have Users and Property Owners, so you of course are already going to be a user on the account. If you would like to add someone else who can help manage your account or who is able to view information you can add them here. All you do is you're going to put in their gmail account and then you'll be able to select whether they have full permission where they can pretty much do what you can do on the account or if you want to restrict that so if you want to look at the specific roles that the different users have you can click on the link called “About full and restricted permissions”. It's going to tell you specifically what can and cannot be accessed.

add user in google webmaster tools

The next one is Verification Details now this is something we've already done. This is going to just let you know when someone has tried to verify the account, whether that's fail or succeeded and how they went about verifying the ownership of this site.

The very last one is Associates. This is for if you would like to add any new associated user. This is often used if you want to have a nap in association with your website and let's say you would like for Google on certain occasions to send it users directly to the web app versus your website, this is going to help you set that up here.

So as you can see there's just a few settings here that you really need to just update. It only takes a matter of a minute or two to complete, but it can make all of the difference. Now if you ever get with you're setting up any of these settings, you can click on the help icon beside the settings icon and this is going to take you right into the search console help where you can type in your different questions.

It's going to present you with all the documentation this is a really quick way of finding answers if you need more help as well. Now to kick things off in the navigation bar let's start with the messages section. Google can send you a variety of messages and these are really messages that are going to alert you to any problems at Google fine but also to give you tips on how you can go about improving your site so that it will help improve your rankings as well.


Now let’s start with messages section. Again we looked at how to be notified by Google via email. If they send us a message to do make sure that you set that up, I don't need to talk more just about the types of messages you may receive. Just you understand how important it really is. Google will notify you if they find an increase in errors on your site.

Let's say if you have a high number of 404 errors or page not found errors then they will notify you of that, so you can go and look into what the problem is and resolve it.

You may know how important it is to have a mobile friendly website. If Google detects any issues with displaying your website and mobile devices they're also going to notify you of that in your account as well.

On top of that of Google cannot actually access your site for any reason they're going to let you know that they attempted to crawl the site but we are unsuccessful so you can look into why they may not have been able to actually crawl your site. If your site has any malware or it was hacked they will also notify you via your account so that you can quickly fix that issue and make sure that your site doesn't get harmed in the search engine rankings and of course that you're not harming any of your visitors as well. Because Google when they find an issue they're going to let visitors know. So you want to make sure that's taken care of as quickly as possible.

You can also receive manual actions against your site from Google as well. If they find that you have violated any guidelines then they will notify you of that and they will manually penalize your website, but this gives you the opportunity to know about this manual action. It allows you to go in and fix any of the issues that may have violated the terms and then you would be able to submit your website for a reconsideration request. This will tell Google that you have resolved any of the issues that they have found and this is a way of letting them know that you're working towards resolving the issues asking them to re-index your site.

So this is just an idea of some of the messages that you may receive but it's very important to receive these to make sure that you are able to solve problems quickly. Again when you receive any messages from Google, they're usually going to give you detailed steps about how to actually take action on what they are recommending or they at least provide you with a valuable link that is going to lead you to the right answer.

google messages

So in your search console account if you click on messages as a new account, you are supposed to already have one message and which is about to improve the search presence of the site. Now if you open the message, you'll notice it's actually going to walk you through some of the steps that we were walking through here.

So it will ask you to add all the versions of your website, that the WWW or non www version. You can select your preferred version and you can also select the target country which we were actually going to take a look at, and you also can add users in a sitemap and so on. So this is going to walk you through the actual steps of setting up preferences and making sure that you are getting everything out of your account.

Now if you go back after adding your Google analytics account, you can see there a message to notify about that. So anytime you have messages, they're all going to appear here in your message section on the left.

Here we have four main menu items; we have Search Appearance, Search Traffic, Google index and crawl. So we're going to take a look at these one by one. Now each of these has several different sub menus that each addresses a different issue.

Search Appearance

We'll start with “Search Appearance” here and this section really helps you to control how your site is displayed as much as possible. You'll notice this little information button by the search appearance and this is going to give you a glimpse of what you can do with this section. You can see this is going to show you any issues with how your title actually displays, it will help you look at this snippet, your description, and it also will allow you to look at your site link. So anything that is displaying as extra pages in search results that searchers can jump too quickly without having to go to the main link presented. It also talks about your URLs, if you have Rich Snippets to show off of events or reviews. So there's a lot that you can do within this section.

Structured Data

Structure data helps Google figure out what your site is actually about and helps it to display Rich Snippets and search results. So this is when you want to add structured data markup to your website and you can look for the type of content that you have and in your code.

structured data

You can add in this schema to tell Google what your content is about and it can also affect how they actually display your website. So this can give you an advantage because let's say you have events instead of just having a user, go directly to your events page and they actually display the date and the names of the events directly in search results the same for reviews and for products there's different ways that your data can be presented in search results. So structured data is actually found on your website, they will show it here and then it will let you know whether they find any issues with it or if there's anything that you can do to improve it.

​If your website does not have any structured data on it at this point they will give you some additional information about where to go to figure out what this is about and how you can actually implement it on your site.

Rich Cards

Now the next one is “Rich Cards” and this is something that's actually know that Google is testing out right now. So if you look at this we have our standard results that we're all familiar with in Google we have rich snippets that you're probably familiar with their giving the example of recipes here that they actually show the URL they show the description but then they have a little picture and you can see they have reviews that are displaying it tells you the time it takes to actually make the recipe and now what they're testing out is rich cards.

rich cards

So this is very similar to Rich Snippets but the display is changed so here now it shows the image of the recipe the name of the recipe the site is displayed on reviews how long it takes to make the recipe and then users can scroll horizontally through those different recipes just like the one they want so it's just a different way to display the same data right now this is only being used for a number of categories.

If you are using a website that has recipes or I believe movies different events like that you may be able to benefit from rich cards.

Data Highlighter

Now “Data Highlighter” is the next one we will take a look at. This is a pretty neat feature because this is one, that will let you if you are going to be displaying reviews or you are going to have event and a number of other data as well that we will take a look at. Surely you've seen some search results that have reviews directly in the search result, and it show off any upcoming events. This will help you display that data directly in search results. So even let's say if you are appearing third or fourth in search results you may still receive a higher click-through rate that maybe because those results of you. Because you have additional data, you have the stars or the reviews that attract attention; you have a list of events that attract attention. So make sure listing actually stand out from all the other search results.

You can experience a higher click-through rate even if you have a lower ranking on that first page. So what this page allows you to do is tag the data directly on your website simply by highlighting it and telling Google what this information is, and then it will know about this information and they may choose to display it in search results.

So what you can do is click the start highlighting button and you can enter your home page, you can insert an inner page or if you have a particular article or an events page you can insert that directly here. Then you can select the type of information that you are going to sharing. You can choose articles, book reviews, events, local businesses, movies, products, restaurant, software applications, TV episodes.

You can display a lot of different information directly in search results. You can just reference a particular article if you want and then choose tag this page, you can also choose the “tag this page and others like it”. It’s going to let you select those other pages and automatically apply the same settings across those pages now what it will do is it is going to bring up the actual article on the website.

So what you can do is you simply highlight the different sections here. So highlight the title and then it's going to give you a drop-down. You can tell Google what you are highlighting, and then you'll notice on the right-hand side it's going to add that information in.

Now there's author, date published, if you want to add the image, if you want to add a category, if there is a rating. So let's say that there is an article here about a particular piece of software and it has different reviews all you need to do is highlight the reviews on the page and then select rating just like you did for title. Same thing with votes. When you’re done simply click publish and then it's going to tell you which pages you actually have published, which data you actually have already submitted to Google.

So Google is now going to better understand the content of these pages and may choose to display it differently in search results which can increase the number of clicks you get to your site.

HTML Improvements

Let's look at HTML improvements. Now if you have a brand new set up here, it probably has not had time to call this site yet and be able to display the information in your account, but what's going to happen here’s Google is going to look at your HTML.

They look at your Meta tags and they're going to display any errors that they find, if they find duplicate titles or duplicate descriptions or titles that are too long. For example any issues that they see they're going to display those directly here. So that way you know which ones need to fix, you can change titles that are too long, change titles that are duplicate of one another and that is going to help you improve your rankings.

Accelerated Mobile Pages

Now “Accelerated Mobile Pages” is the last section under “Search Appearance” and this is all again about displaying better pages for mobile users. If they find any errors with your mobile pages they will notify you about that here and give you suggestions, but this is also going to let you specify specific pages which they are calling and accelerated mobile pages.

So these are pages, let's say if you have two pages one that you present to anyone that is using a desktop, versus anyone that is using a mobile device. The mobile device ones are going to load faster, they may have less graphics, may be laid out a little bit differently, but they're really meant to load very quickly and to look good on mobile devices.

So this allows you to specify those pages and to direct users to those pages as well. This will help make sure that your amp compliant with your pages and you can walk through the process of “Getting Started with AMP”. Doing so is going to make sure that you have designed your website to be mobile friendly and also to make sure that you are going to be presented in search results for mobile users rather than losing all of the traffic that you could be gaining from those users.

Search Traffic

Now let's go ahead and move on to the “Search Traffic” section. This section obviously relates to all of the information about the search traffic that you receive on your website, and it gives you a lot of valuable information that you can use to really improve your rankings, and improve your traffic and everything that's going on with your website.

So let's stack all these subsections one by one again.

Search Analytics

Let's start off with the first one “Search Analytics”, now if you just set up account, Google has not had a chance to process your traffic. It's not going to be able to display in the information.

But as Google starts to be able to display your information, you're going to be given a chart of all your different search analytics which you're going to be able to customize it. So you can really drill into specific pages, you can actually compare different pages and this is going to tell you how you can improve the content that's on your site.

google search analytics

Let's look at an example, let's say you want to look at specific queries, you can insert specific keywords in “Filter Queries” from queries and then you can look at how many clicks you are actually getting for those specific keywords. You can look at the number of impressions, that this is the number of times that your site has actually been shown in search results, but may not have necessarily been actually clicked on. Then you have your click-through rate, so this is comparing your clicks vs your impressions to give you the percentage of time that your link when displayed is actually clicked on, and then it's going to tell you the average position your average ranking in search results based on the time frame that you're looking for.

So if you are looking for specific keywords as I mentioned you can do that via “filter options”. You can also click on pages so if you want to look for a specific page you want to see, the top pages that are bringing in traffic to your site you can do that again from the “filter options”. But if you want to see the top keywords that are coming in to your site you would search for queries.

Now if you target a specific country with, yet let's say you targeted number of countries; you'll be able to filter the countries that you actually want to serve, that you want to target and you can see where the bulk of your traffic is coming from. As well you will also be able to compare devices, how many users are actually finding your site using their mobile device. Then search type, are they finding your content in web search results, are they finding your site via images or videos.

So this tells you how people are actually coming through to your site. Then you can of course look at a date range of you are looking for a specific number. So if you want to go back to the past 30 days or you want to compare that, lets say to the past 60 days or where you were last year this will let you compare all of this data.

Now when you actually display the information you can click on click impressions click through rate and position as we talked about and then the graph will update, it is going to show you all of that information.

This information is helpful, because there's a lot that you can really take away from doing these searches and from filtering comparing different pages. First is especially with the click through rate, let's say you have worked really hard to create very valuable information and you think you have a really great post. But you're seeing that the click-through rate is really low.

Here you're getting a lot of impressions, the page is actually ranking but people aren't clicking on it. So this allows you to go back and adjust the page, so that you can work on improving the click-through rate, this may be something as simple as changing the title or changing the description. So it's more relevant where it's more enticing.

What I also like to use this tool for is when I look for queries and I look for what are my top keywords that are driving traffic, and that is all fine keyword that I'm not intentionally trying to rain for but there's still driving traffic. So let's say I find a keyword that I'm actually ranking for steadily on the second page, but I haven't put in the effort toward that. So now with just a little bit more effort to actually try to rank higher for that page. I can get some additional backlinks. I can optimize that particular page a little bit better. Then I can see a significant increase in traffic without a lot of effort.

So this is a great way to use the content that you already have to increase your rankings and increase the amount of traffic that you are getting. Lastly if so I’m finding any keywords that I don't feel a related to my actual content that I do want to go back to my page and I want to make sure that I optimize it properly. I make sure to remove anything that is causing me to rank for keywords, that are not really relevant and the reason this is important is because I want to make sure that I keep my bounce rate as low as possible.

Bounce rate is the number of people who actually come to your site and then immediately leave, because it's not what they were looking for they don't spend time on the site. So if you’re ranking for terms that are not relevant you want to minimize that as much as possible because Google does take into consideration your bounce rate when ranking your site as well.

Okay, so that's definitely a place where you're going to want to spend some time and have a little bit of fun with that. But let's move on to “Links to Your Site”.

Links to Your Site

Now if you have a brand new account you'll find that it's not going to display in the information. This can be because either it has not crawled your website has not gone out and found the data because you just set up the account, and it could also be that you don't have any links coming to your site's.

When you do have backlinks it is going to tell you the number of backlinks that you have in total. It's also going to tell you who actually is linking to you. You can also see the full report of that and it's going to tell you about the most popular content.

So this is going to tell you which content people are actually attracted to, what makes them want to actually link back to your site. You also see at the bottom, it says how your data is linked and that is actually your anchor text. So what is the text that people are actually using to link back from their site to your site. So this will give you an idea of how varied your anchor text is, if you need to have any of those adjusted as well.

Internal Links

Internal links are actually looking at links from your site to other pages on your site. A lot of times you'll find that this gives a lot of information here. But a lot of times here they're showing you pages that are linked they have a high number of links but that could be coming from menus whether that's in the header or footer. So this isn't always very relevant to me, but it's a good idea to make sure that you are having internal links.

So this is a good reminder of that and it also reminds you if you have newer pages that you can link back to other pages or have your older pages linked to your newer pages - really how Google crawl your entire site and to be able to pass link juice through your site as well to help bring some other pages.

Manual Actions

Now if you click on “Manual Actions” what you always want to see is the message “no manual webspam actions found”. If for any reason Google has slapped you with a manual action they're going to tell you about it here. They're going to tell you about why they did it so that you can go back and fix the issue.

Now if you ever see the manual action this is typically because you either have some bad links going to your site or the very unnatural links so you want to go through the process of removing those. This can also happen if your site has been hacked and it hasn't been resolved, if there's a lot of spam going on with your site this is when you can see a penalty for thin content.

If you really don't have a lot of value on your site where you have very little words. You don't have to worry about manual actions if you're building a quality site. If there’s any spamming going on or more black hat as they say, you may be open to a manual action by Google.

International Targeting

Another section that's very important here. Because there's two main options that are going on here, you have both the language and the country.

So this is increasingly important if you are targeting users who speak a specific language or who are in a specific country, and this is your way of telling Google that you really want to target visitors in USA for example.

So in the language section, let's say you have a website that has multiple languages then you want to point people from specific countries to the page that actually has the specific language that they would be looking for. This is actually code that will go directly onto the web page, so that you can drive users to the correct page.

Now under country, let's say you are targeting users and USA again. If you have a country-specific extension than Google is already going to recognize that you are targeting users in that specific country. But if you keep your domain more generic, so you're using a dot-com, a dot-net, dot-org anything that's not country-specific but you still want to target specific countries then you want to let Google know that. You can do that by selecting target users in and then you can select from any country and you can click Save and that is going to update that for you.

Mobile Usability

Lastly we have mobile usability. So again when you have a site that has just set up Google is not going to have any information for you. What will happen is when they take a look at your site, they're going to let you know if there's any issues that they see for presenting n your site to mobile users.

For example if there's a small font size and they're going to tell you which specific pages they see this on. So these are very easy issues to correct. You simply go to that page, increase the font size and you're done. So this gives you a few different things that you can do to improve your mobile usability, which in turn is going to help you increase your rankings as you are. Complying with what Google is saying is best for their visitors.

Now we've already covered Search Appearance and Search Traffic, so we have a better idea of how we can help Google to display our site better in search results. Also how to better analyze the traffic that is coming to our website and better help Google to target the right visitors for us.

Google Index

Now it's time to move on to the “Google Index” section. Now there are a number of options here in this particular section. You will see we have the “index status” here.

Index Status

This is where you can go if you want to find out how many pages Google has actually indexed on your site.Let's say if you submit a sitemap and their next crawl you can see how many pages have actually been index. It's also going to show you when you've had additional pages become index and also if you've had a decrease in pages that are being indexed. You can identify if there's any issues that are going on.

Now don't be concerned if you don't see a hundred percent of your pages being index, that's normal and that happens. But you want to get your number close to the total number of pages typically that you have on your website and ideally as you're adding additional content you should see this number continue to rise as well.

google index status

If you are seeing a lower number of pages than you would be expecting or it's not near that hundred percent mark, then you can click on the “Advanced tab” and that will let you know if there's any pages that you've actually blocked search engines from indexing.

So let's say if in your robots.txt file, which is the file where you can actually tell certain search bots not to actually index the pages or not to access your site that could be a part of the problem as well. But this typically is where you're going to block, let's say WordPress login or if you have private web pages anything that you don't want displayed in search results or that there is no need for Google to crawl; you would put those in this file.

Another option is if you are not seeing enough pages is to also go back and look at your site map to make sure that you have all of the page is actually listed in there. It may just be time for you to update your site map and you submit that to Google so they can consider indexing additional pages as well.

Content Keywords

Now moving on to the “Content Keywords” section, this is where Google actually analyzes your site and they search your site for the keywords that have here the most frequently, and then they give you a full list of all the keywords that they find starting with the one that is the most prevalent.

A couple ways you would like to use this content keywords section is to see if there is any keywords that you would like to have more content about or that you may really improve your rankings for, if there's something that I'm not really targeting as much as I could.

Another reason you should visit this section is for more of a security standpoint. Sometimes our sites can be hacked or they can have malware and we may not know. So we can look for signs of this and one of the ways we can do that is by looking for content keywords.

If you are on this list, you can see any keywords that you know you haven't talked about on your site or let's say you're running a gardening site or a local plumbing business website but then you see a keywords about gambling or some sort of pharmaceutical keywords. Then that is a sign that there's something going on and that allows you to catch it and take action before it really becomes a bigger problem.

Blocked Resources

Now we can also take a look at blocked resources and the blocked resources section is if you have particular code that you have blocked search engines from looking at. So this could be CSS for example or your JavaScript files.

If Google cannot see how you actually display your site to searchers then they're going to list an error here, because they want to be able to also see how you actually display your site to the visitors. So this is the easy way to know if that content has been blocked by the developer. let's say this will help you to make sure that Google is indexing your site and making sure that they can see your website like they want to.

Remove URLs

Now the last section is “Remove URLs”. So hopefully this is something that you will never be using because this is really only to be used in an emergency situation. Google really doesn't want you to use this unless it's absolutely crucial.

Let's say you have confidential information that has gotten out in search results and you want to make sure that you can temporarily hide that page this is where you can go to do that to make sure that page does not display, but you don't want to use this for anything simple.

So if you have like a 404 error or there's just the page that you don't really want to drive a lot of traffic to for one reason or another, you want to make sure that you're handling that directly on your site versus going to Google and asking them to remove it. Again this is just more for emergency situations.


Final section we have here is the “Crawl” section. This is all about Google actually sending out there BOT to actually crawl your website to index your pages and to notify you if there are any issues that they come across during this crawl.

Crawl Errors

So the first section here that we want to pay attention to is the “Crawl Errors”. You're actually going to see this from your dashboard when you login, ideally you're going to want to see a screen where you have all green, and you have all check marks, it's not displaying any errors.

crawl errors

But if there are any errors whether this is pages not found, If they're being redirected to a bad page, if you have any pages that are being blocked, if they're finding any server errors they're going to lose that specifically here and they're going to let you know what page they found it on and which error is the most important to fix. Then you'll be able to find additional information on how to actually go about fixing it, so it's very helpful.

Crawl Stats

The next section is “Crawl Stats”, here it's going to give you a few different charts that you can take a look at. This is going to show you the number of pages that are crawled each day and the total amount of content that's actually downloaded each day. So this is showing you how much content actually analyzing to index and then below that you'll see how much time to they actually spend crawling the web site.

The important things to pay attention here is, over time you want to see that they're crawling more pages because you should be adding more more pages, more content to your website.

If you're not finding this number going up, then this is where you want to look into this a little bit more. You can start by just looking at your site map and seeing if it's really showing all of your pages as well.

Another thing is you also want to take a look at the amount of time that Google spends crawling your site. Because the more time than it takes them that should really be a red flag as well. Google wants to see a fast loading site, but it's taking them a long time. It's likely because your site is not really loading fast. So that is going to help you really identify there's something going on in your website or if maybe it's just the host that you're working with. So you can help them better crawl the web site.

Fetch as Google

It is a neat tool, because this actually allows you to enter your website or even just enter a specific web page and you can also select the type of device that you want to check it for.

Then you can just click fetch and this is going to send Google to your site. So that they can show you how they actually see your website and how visitors actually see your website so you can make sure that it matches.

You will see a desktop version of the site, you can get a screenshot of the site and you can make sure that it looks the same. So this is a good sign it means that that both visitors and search bots are seen the same website.

Robots.txt Tester

We also have a robots.txt tester and we talked a little bit about robots.txt already. This is going to show you what is actually seen by search bot when they're looking at your site and it's going to show you what you have asked search bot not to actually look into or index on your website, what it is that you do want them to look into.

So if you actually want to test something, if you want to see a particular page is actually blocked, you can go ahead and enter the URL here and you can test that out it's going to let you know.

robots txt tester

So if you're not really familiar with robots.txt, your concern that maybe a particular search bot is not allowed to crawl a particular page or particular data on your website and you can do a search for that here and test that out. That that allow you to make any changes to your actual robots.txt file to help search box better index your site.


Now a very very important section here is the site map section, and this is what a lot of people use a Google search console account for. So right now you don't have any site maps and this will be the case when you first start your account.

You can simply click add your test site map and this is going to let you submit a sitemap, but you also go back and test it to make sure that Google could actually see your site map. So you'll need to actually upload one.

google sitemaps

There's lots of ways that you can do it. You can do it manually or there's also lots of tools online where if you have a smaller site you can just throw in the URL and you can let them know how often do you update your site and click start and brought to 500 pages it's going to create a site map for you.

You can upload that to your site and then you'll be able to submit the URL here and you have uploaded a sitemap for Google to use when they crawl your site for the next time. But really in your sitemap, you want to be honest about how often your content is changing.

So if you have let's say a news feed and you know you're constantly updated every hour you want to let them know that. If you do it weekly, monthly, yearly then you want to be honest about that as well. Because there's really no reason to send Google back to your site to ask them to continually crawl your website and index to make pages if you don't actually have any new content for them to index.

Now when you do have a site map that has already been submitted you'll be able to see how much content is on the site map, how much is actually been submitted and how many pages have actually been index you can break that down by web pages, images, videos, so it will show you all of that information and that's very helpful.

URL Parameters

Lastly now we have “URL Parameters”, now this is actually one that if you are not familiar with URL parameters that doesn't bring about if you don't know how to actually work with parameters, then this is a section you want to stay away from. Really because using this incorrectly can really harm how your site appears in search results.

So if this is something you are familiar with that I would encourage you to go ahead and look into the section if it's something that you would need. This is really to show Google when you have the same content on your website but they actually tagged it differently at the end of the page name this can help Google know what content to display. But like I said if that doesn't make sense to you then you should leave that section alone.

Security Issues

Now the final section we need to look at is the security issues section. Now obviously any security issue is a very big issue that you should pay attention to. So as Google crawls your website, if they find any security-related issues at all they're going to list them all here and that's obviously something you want to jump on top of immediately. Ideally you do want to see this screen here that they have not detected any security issues.

Google Security Issues

This is going to actually give you resources as well if your site has been hacked and if there's any malware that's been put on your website, that's going to give you the steps to take to actually go about resolving those issues as well.

As I mentioned earlier on if you need additional help with setting up the Google search console account or really interpreting any of the data that it provides you, you can go to “Help” section and put in your question there and it will give you documentation about it, that's pretty straightforward and very helpful.

Other Resources

There's also this “Other Resources” section down at the bottom and this is going to give you a variety of sources as it relates to the Google search console and in improving your site for search results.

So hopefully by now you can see just how important your Google Search Console account is and that it's very very valuable tool to have when you are working on a website. Especially if you are working to rank a website and search engine who was going to tell you any issues that they find they're going to give you this free information.

You can really use this as a blueprint to help increase your rankings and to help know what Google sees when they look at your site. So if you haven't already go set up your Google webmaster tools account make sure to regularly check in on it and make sure that you have set up to be notified of any issues at Google finds.